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The savage world of winterwier!

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  • The savage world of winterwier!

    Oh what the heck, in for a penny in for a pounding; I hereby establish this thread as a spur to my lackadaisical self to finally get to work on this particular corner of Charles Phipps' Creation - a place best described as a Pre-Industrial Science Fiction setting and therefore one that happens to be very difficult to distinguish from Heroic Fantasy at this point in it's History.

    Watch this space, but not TOO closely please!

  • #2
    Re: The savage world of winterwier!

    ONCE there was an Age of Dragons, to whom this world was as the egg from which they hatched - forth they went and wheresoever they went they took what they desired, killed as they pleased and consumed all that would resist; in the end they found themselves grown more hungry still and devoured one another, bringing to an end to their age of blood and burning.

    This we endured but did not delight in.

    THEN there was an Age of Empire - for from out of the ashes of the Dragon-Age there rose up those that had once been their patient thralls and killed those who had long since ceased to be more masterful than troublesome; from the ranks of these Dragon-slayers rose Peerless Alacarn, who proved herself the Greatest there ever was and forged the Greatest Empire that ever will be.

    We burned so bright that the Sun and the Moons seemed a little dimmer in those days; but the Demons came and that age screamed to its end until choked with torments.

    NOW there is an Age of Change, an Age of Ice and an Age for Endings; first our Forebears warred down the King in Shadows, the mightiest tyrant for an Age brought low by the mightiest of mortals - if this might be done what cannot be achieved?

    Then the eldest of all Crowns was broken, not by chivalry or by sorcery or by treachery but by Peasantry roused to the utmost ire and bloody revenge - if this can be accomplished what cannot be imagined?

    Finally a time has come when it will be fallible Humankind and it Kin, not unfaltering Fate that shall determine the ways of the World - for when the very World turns from ice to earth, when monsters unimagined grow lean and hungry as true folk grow scarcer, when Everything is there for the taking and glory awaits those who will dare to seize upon it, it is a Time of Heroes.

    For who else would be mad enough to reach out, to risk all for infinitely more and survive the consequences?


    • #3
      Re: The savage world of winterwier!

      BTW, while it may sound strange, I liberally have stolen your inspirational work-ups of my work to great effect in both my other non-Winterweir fantasy campaigns and my writing.

      You sir, have made me a far far better writer!

      Thank you so very much!
      [b]The United Federation of Charles[/b]: [url][/url]
      [b]Twitter[/b]: Charles Phipps@Willowhugger


      • #4
        Re: The savage world of winterwier!

        Thank you for the kind words Charles; I hope that my work shall continue to merit such praise, but suspect that I shall have to work much harder to ensure that this remains the case!


        • #5
          Re: The savage world of winterwier!

          Charles, I hope that you remain well and will forgive me my recent absence - a commitment to a six day work week, however temporary, tends to eat up spare time! - but I have recently broken my writers block where names are concerned (into small, shivering splinters of shrapnel) and therefore have an impressive number of them which I would like to post in a series of lists themed around the various realms of Alacarn with which I intend to associate them (principally Amania, Calipan, D'Henna, The Pirate Islands, Tythan, Turlon and Vokelstein); I have also had a whole series of thoughts developing upon the Monarchs of Tythan (from Harrold IV to the unworthy Blue Rose Sovereigns), the present generation of House Blue Rose and thoughts further developing Calipan and Vokelstein.

          For the moment all I can offer are lists of names (named characters, personal and place names on the whole), but I hope that names like 'Ulric the Unconquered' 'Roderick the Pleasurer' 'Maud Mankiller' 'Brock Battle-wise' 'Rose the Ruddy' 'Brand the Bold' 'Lapis Longbow' and 'Aethelred the Impaler' will make amends for my absences by supplying amusement and inspiration in lieu of actual detail.

          May I please ask if it would be alright were I to take the liberty of posting such natter?


          • #6
            Concerning Vokelstein

            The Highest Throne, The Fortress Mountain, The Kingdom of Ancient Shadows, The Land of Corn and Clouds, The Bloodless Realm, The Hidden Heights, The Unknown Queendom.

            A mountainous island of quiet set amidst the long, troubled border between D'Henna and Turlon - in fact both sides in the Eternal War sell those captives they cannot ransom into slavery through the markets of the Mountain Realm and frequently accept payment in kind rather than in cash, eager to defy the desertification on either side of the border and eat well or at the very least drink away memories of bloody nights and hard days.

            Blessed with enviable altitude, agriculture and independence from both of these inveterate rivals Vokelstein might well be regarded as the most fortunate of all those realms that have split from D'Henna had it not been cursed with Vampires long since. Yet thought the Vampires are undoubtedly the most Evil influence upon this realm, they remain far from the greatest threat to its existence - for Vokelstein is not just a Volcano, it's a SUPER-VOLCANO.

            There are very few persons on Alacarn who are aware of this fact and even fewer of them actually live in Vokelstein for reasons that should be very, very obvious.


            Some would call Vokelstein the greatest stronghold in all the Known World instead of the smallest Realm and there is much truth to be found in this assertion; a single, enormous mountain with three peaks and an entire civilisation cradled in a series of hollows and vales carved out of the mountain's fabric over the course of its history by artifice as well as through the workings of nature (not to mention a number of other, equally-interesting communities hidden amidst the extensive network of tunnels that riddle this grand rock) Vokelstein rises from the borders of D'Henna and Turlon upon a foundation of foothills so bare and so steep that they had to carve steps into them to make the Mountain accessible from the ground - even then they had to settle the Inner Realm first so that would-be visitors would find supplies waiting for them and would therefore NOT die of starvation.

            In fact to this very day the majority of the wildlife native to this almighty rock are descended from creatures that flew into the Green Heights hidden amidst the ramparts of rock that girt the Mountain and the long white streamers of cloud that so frequently cloaked these peaks; birds flightless and flighted therefore remain the most common creatures to be seen away from the works of man, although insects of unusual size have also been frequently observed over the centuries and other, stranger things have since been introduced to the Hidden Heights.

            It was this very ease of accessibility from the air and impossibility of access from the ground that recommended Vokelstein to its first landlords, those two blue dragons Talthar and Turroc (known to song and story but seldom to History as the 'Twin Slayers'), who had come to find their former stamping grounds (the desert that would one day become Calipan) a little TOO wide-open for their peace of mind and been highly gratified to discover a most attractive alternative - infinitely more attractive, in fact, given the flourishing flora, fauna and fierce creatures to be found in their new home for while Dragons enjoy great heat, even they become bored of the sheer EMPTINESS of a desert after the first century or so.

            The trouble was that their impeccably-comfortable and impregnable new home was perhaps just too small for TWO dragons - increasingly prone to quarrel, the previously-insperable pair now became prone to spend a season or so apart each year, giving rise to the uncertainty and suspicions that would allow Alacarn of D'Henna - the Once and Future Empress - to first drive a wedge between the pair of them, then manipulate them into a duel that would kill one and wreck the other.

            It would be the murder of Wyvern-riders that had finished off the last surviving Slayer after that fatal duel who became the first recorded human residents of Vokelstein, arriving by air to find a landscape not too different from their own Home but just that right degree milder and establishing their first continental garrison there not long afterwards - the 'Big Rock' being useful to her only if the Wyvern Riders were in residence and at this point in its history still entirely vulnerable to hunger (for no farm had yet taken root there) Alacarn elected to permit this settlement to go unchallenged and reigned over it with a light hand, in the interests of ensuring that D'Henna could maintain this impregnable stronghold as a thumb in the eye of Turlon.

            This approach would be mirrored across centuries of History even long after the Uniter, given the usefulness of Vokelstein and its residence, although Empress Kalinka A'Alacarn would take care to ensure that at least the beginnings of a land route into Vokelstein would be laid out - a process pushed still further by her own heir, much to the discomfort of those Wyvern Riders and affiliated mountaineers who had been rather getting used to being quite able to thumb their noses at the lowlanders if they really felt inclined to do so.

            Yet while the Riders did very well or still better than that in their new home, no matter how many generations of Wyverns were introduced, their eggs simply would not hatch in anything like the numbers needed to replace their losses - given that even in the heyday of the Empire accidents and undiplomatic incidents alike took their toll on the Knights of the Sky (also given that not EVERY Wyvern Rider wanted to risk themselves at the heart of the Empire), Vokelstein remained more a garrison than a nation for as long as the Alacarn remained a unified whole.

            Then the Shadow King emerged from long obscurity and killed all of them that were left - so that he might secure a stronghold that would allow him to hold the balance of power while the Empire of Alacarn tore itself to pieces during the War of Bloody Tears and thereby dictate the course of the continent's Future in a luxurious style to which he fully intended to become accustomed.

            Even as the Armies of Empire marched against one another the Shadow King built upon his commanding position in Vokelstein - constructing the infrastructure that would allow Vokelstein to finally be civilised, further strengthening the massive natural defences of the Mountain and above all establishing the training grounds upon which he would build an army worthy of his designs.

            He even adopted a protege so that he might have an heir to whom he might leave all that he had built should he decide the time had come to move on; this boy, although of obscure origins (last of the Wyvern Riders? half-celestial case study? perhaps even just one of the many refugees whom The Shadow King offered asylum in return for obedience) would never-the-less write himself into the history of Vokelstein before his time had passed - though not in any fashion his Foster Father would have approved of.

            But none of this would come to pass before the Mad God Malaxas came to Alacarn - of this Abominations seductions, savagery and various depredations we shall not write here in any detail, but suffice it to be said that he accepted the Allegiance of the Shadow King (offered by an emissary who rather exceeded his authority in a fit of passion induced by The Crimson King and honoured by Brother Shadowspawn's former master as often in the breach as in the observance of fealty) and proceeded to command him as one of his own.

            The Shadow King, being too canny to start a fight before he'd accumulated power sufficient to win it, accepted this homage as a fait accompli and proceeded to serve his new Overlord almost as efficiently as he served his own interests - under his rule Vokelstein became the eye of the storm that would tear Alacarn not only apart, but into something fallen so far from former glories as to be barely inhabitable, deceptively-untroubled yet surrounded all about by ruin.

            Yet even as the power and significance of The Shadow King in his Kingdom of Vokelstein reached a peak of iron discipline, power and ruthlessly-exploited prosperity the factions that would thrust him from his Kingdom and utterly subvert his designs began to form around Brother Shadowspawn the Vampire and The Prince (as that living protege of The Shadow King had become known to one and all); the former seeking to ensure that the power of Vokelstein would become the true reflection of Malaxas in all his glittering terror and serve none but the Crimson King, the latter moved to side with the last lingering relics of Free Humanity and Kindred Species out of fear for what might become of Creation were it dominated by a Mad God - and also so that he might free himself at last from his Foster Father's tyrannical tutelage.

            Between the two of them, twisted zealot and ruthless rebel chieftain, they reshaped Vokelstein in their own image to such a degree that The Shadow King could only resign himself to pursuing his designs elsewhere - frustrated beyond belief at seeing much that he had built either seduced into disobedience or blatantly turned against him, he vanishes from the History of Vokelstein more mysteriously than he arrived.

            Exultant at the success of his scheming and proselytising, Brother Shadownspawn turned the upper hand he had been given in the long guerrilla struggle against The Prince to the task of finally swatting this particular gadfly once and for all, so that the Vampire might finally launch a Crusade that would utterly ruin any chance of survival for the civilisation that had defied The Crimson King.

            Having achieved considerable power in his own right and carved out still greater forces from remnants of the Shadow King, The Prince decided to finally match his accumulated Power against his Enemy - the conflict that ensued would tear out the heartland of the Shadow King in Vokelstein, then use the larger fragments of shrapnel to beat the enemies brains out and finally become known as the Battle of the Mountain Breaking in song and story, as well as the few, fragmented histories of those days to be preserved.

            In short The Prince and his followers fought downhill in the face of superior numbers, forced the Army of Brother Shadowspawn to a stalemate and then finally dropped a mountainside on their enemies to ensure that Final Victory in the Battle for Vokelstein would belong to the Prince and not to the Vampire Priest.

            As would later become apparent, victory in this battle would not settle the War once and for all - still, in the centuries that followed the heirs of The Prince would leave their mark so deeply set into the Rock of Vokelstein that even the Vampire Queen could not extirpate all traces of the traditions that had thrown down her predecessor.

            But to say even so much is to get ahead of myself at this point in the tale; suffice it to say that The Prince was made secure in his Principality (as a note while his female heirs would title themselves Queens, in honour of their forefather his heirs male would allow themselves no other title but Prince or rather HIGH Prince, just to make absolutely clear that they were the very mightiest sort of minor monarch), especially after marrying into the Aristocracy of D'Henna and thereby securing his succession also.

            In the end he disappeared from the pages of History as mysteriously as he had entered them and although those closest to him mourned his passing, many more who had found the sheer weight of the Destiny he had so ardently pursued oppress them even as he had freed them from the depredations of Brother Shadowspawn felt more than a little relief that things might now settle into a more quiet sort of History.

            With the odd exception, such as Vokelstein's peripheral but crucial role in the creation of the Middle Kingdom (that would in the course of its brief existence humble both Dh'Henna and Turlon before the Tralax exploited the lure of a crown to turn these borderers to first to their own advantage, then against D'Henna and finally against one another), The Fortress Mountain and those native to it were pleased to pursue their own affairs -troubled by the outside world only when they chose to trade with the Lowlanders or exploit their place at the pivot point of the balance of power between their two powerful neighbours (a crucial position that allowed The High Princes and Queens of Vokelstein enormous autonomy even before full Independence was assumed).

            But then The Vampires returned and the Green Heights began to become a Green Hell.


            • #7
              Re: The savage world of winterwier!

              Originally posted by Libra1010 View Post
              Charles, I hope that you remain well and will forgive me my recent absence - a commitment to a six day work week, however temporary, tends to eat up spare time! - but I have recently broken my writers block where names are concerned (into small, shivering splinters of shrapnel) and therefore have an impressive number of them which I would like to post in a series of lists themed around the various realms of Alacarn with which I intend to associate them (principally Amania, Calipan, D'Henna, The Pirate Islands, Tythan, Turlon and Vokelstein); I have also had a whole series of thoughts developing upon the Monarchs of Tythan (from Harrold IV to the unworthy Blue Rose Sovereigns), the present generation of House Blue Rose and thoughts further developing Calipan and Vokelstein.

              For the moment all I can offer are lists of names (named characters, personal and place names on the whole), but I hope that names like 'Ulric the Unconquered' 'Roderick the Pleasurer' 'Maud Mankiller' 'Brock Battle-wise' 'Rose the Ruddy' 'Brand the Bold' 'Lapis Longbow' and 'Aethelred the Impaler' will make amends for my absences by supplying amusement and inspiration in lieu of actual detail.

              May I please ask if it would be alright were I to take the liberty of posting such natter?
              Of course, and always, Libra!

              I consider your actions most welcome!

              I am already two chapters into my next book as inspired by you and your efforts!
              [b]The United Federation of Charles[/b]: [url][/url]
              [b]Twitter[/b]: Charles Phipps@Willowhugger


              • #8
                Vokelstein - Points of Interest

                THE LAND

                The Furrows
                Low Lake
                The Hollow Heights
                The Pinch
                Longburrow Town
                Goosewash Lake
                The River Tipple & Tipple Vale
                Last Gasp
                Stone Nest
                White Lightning Vale
                Meadwater Vale
                Smokewater Springs
                High Harvest


                Baila, who seizes the Dreadful Toll
                Ber of the Thirteen Victims
                Bluma Barley-Hand
                Churn Cheer-Widow
                Clamber Featherfall
                Faiga Four-Wives
                Falk the High-Flown
                Fruma the Trackless
                Gander the Thunderer
                Hawk the Harrier
                Hersh the Unhurried
                Kaila the Callous
                Kreine the Graceless
                Leeba the Peeler
                Raisa Slice-Stone
                Selig, bastard son of Sybus
                Sender Sunburn
                Shaynah Sky-High
                Vale the Grave-keeper
                Velvela the Voluptuary
                Zusa the Unrighteous
                Last edited by Libra1010; 11-30-2014, 01:19 PM.


                • #9
                  Re: The savage world of winterwier!

                  The post above is just a starting-point from which I intend to make my way into a brief description of the landscape of Vokelstein and a few points of interest scattered across it; the names I include as both a representative sample of personal names gathered from across the Highest Queendom (also, I hope, as inspiration for suggestions from anyone who happens to be reading this and would like to suggest a character to go with these names).

                  More later, I hope.


                  • #10
                    Re: The savage world of winterwier!

                    I absolutely love the write-up of Volkelstein! It's given me so many ideas! Your love of the setting is awesome.

                    The super-volcano bit is my favorite.

                    The struggle between two dragons over territory is very interesting, too.

                    Your interpretation of the Shadow King is wonderful as well.

                    The last line is awesome too.
                    [b]The United Federation of Charles[/b]: [url][/url]
                    [b]Twitter[/b]: Charles Phipps@Willowhugger


                    • #11
                      Re: The savage world of winterwier!

                      So are Vokelstein's mercenaries the best in the world? Considering it is Switzerland after all.


                      • #12
                        Re: The savage world of winterwier!

                        Actually they're more Transylvanian by way of Tibet (and I had not actually given any thought to the matter of mercenaries), but now that you've given me the idea YES Vokelstein does indeed have something of a reputation for contracting out troops to whichever faction happens to be offering the best opportunity for Vampire Queen Carmeera to 'domesticate' some of the more violently troublesome of her subjects (either they die or they decide not to come back or they get used to fighting for their Queen in theory).

                        As a note, however, this only works for Queen Carmeera when she whistles up some local aristocracy and their fighting tail from The Furrows - more like a Highland Chief and his tacks-men than Swiss Pikers - because those fellows are tied to her directly by bloodline (even when they're not Vampires - Her High Majesty really got around in her living days and her descendants have proven no less promiscuous, albeit usually less powerful) and in Vokelstein bloodline will almost always trump principle (especially when the chance to get the heck out of The Fortress Mountain unmolested by any pursuit is involved).

                        Given that the small, relatively rare Towns of Vokelstein (like Deliverance, Longburrow and Portertown) are mostly chartered - since they rest in The Level, a small and relatively flat, rather barren but by no means infertile area at the heart of Vokelstein where the Highest Kingdom meets the Lowlands (if one imagines The Fortress Mountain as a vast castle this would be the Bailey) which is somewhat removed from the heartland of Queen Karmeera's strength.

                        Quite frankly these towns are run by traders, all the better to reap the benefits of Trade (they're not Merchant Princes by any means but they're definitely Burghers at the very least); they don't have the blood ties and vexed question of fealty that keep the Living Aristocracy more loyal to the Vampire Queen than they are obliged to be, but they're scared green that if they push back too hard against The Night then the Vampire Queen will casually dam the flow of foodstuffs et al that keeps the Towns solvent and well-fed.

                        Bloody-handed and possessed by a God-Complex of hideous proportions Queen Carmeera may be, but she hasn't kept her throne by brandishing the meat-cleaver when palming the stiletto better suits the problem at hand; it should also be noted that she has agents in almost all the towns and that she has been known to pin up some inspiring examples when a town starts moving from 'Disgruntled' to 'Restless' but usually before it reaches 'Riotous' (and what these examples usually inspire is utter dread - put simply when you think of Vokelstein Vampires think 'Old-School Tzimisce' and try not to shudder if you get the reference - or look it up on a full stomach).

                        On a lighter note, some of the mercenaries do come back without having been inspired to increase their loyalty to the Vampire Queen and sometimes they bring friends - this is, in fact, how The Watchmen found their way into The Broken Peak (formerly Kings Peak and now the badlands of Vokelstein, as well as a stronghold of resistance to the local Tyrants - on a good night Brother Shadowspawn can appreciate the irony in having exchanged seats with his old enemy The Prince); unfortunately those who went much beyond conducting an Underground Railroad have not fared very well to date.


                        • #13
                          Re: The savage world of winterwier!

                          I absolutely love the write-up of Volkelstein! It's given me so many ideas! Your love of the setting is awesome.
                          I'm truly sorry that I haven't been able to post more than I have to date, for I truly enjoy The Savage Worlds of Charles Phipps (since it gives me such a broad canvas to play with - Science Fiction not merely Futuristic, but Near-Future and Pre-Industrial too!); I'm currently doing my best to plan out ideas focussing on the Old Hennan Hegemony (Calipan, D'Henna and of course Vokelstein) but we shall have to see if anything comes of that.

                          If you have any ideas that you like well enough to post, I would love to see them!

                          The super-volcano bit is my favorite.
                          I'm actually rather proud of that one idea in particular - I was looking for a way to add a distinctive note to the local Land Beyond the Forest (as well as an outward expression of the unsettled state of Vokelstein) when it struck me that siting this Nation atop a Smoking Mountain would do just that, as well as neatly explain The Shadow Kings interest in this particular rock (I suspect that for all his subtlety he DOES have something of a detectable pattern to his behaviour).

                          The struggle between two dragons over territory is very interesting, too.
                          Thank you very kindly, although to be strictly accurate what we're speaking of was in fact more a quarrel over the proper care of their hoard, complicated by a lovers quarrel and fatally exacerbated by the cunning of Alacarn the Uniter - although there was more than a trace of a ******* match to the whole affair too.

                          Your interpretation of the Shadow King is wonderful as well.
                          He rather strikes me as being, effectively, Sauron as Railroad Baron - someone who is genuinely interested in Progress and who happens to be capable of a certain philanthropy, but who doesn't particularly care to make concessions to Human Frailty when dictating the pace of change (or who gets crushed under the wheels of progress as a result).

                          I think I've actually worked out a characterisation of The Emperor in Turlon that satisfies me as being equal to The Shadow King; it rather jelled together when it occurred to me that making him a more morally-ambivilent character than he had previously been in my imagination - someone who, unlike The Shadow King, lives more in the Future than in the Present and therefore takes a thoroughly laissez-faire attitude to influencing the World (because he dislikes having to confront the crudity of the Present, since it distracts him from the Glories to come).

                          In many ways he's more of a Philosopher-King and Oracle than a Railord Baron-Tyrant; if he likes you then he'll talk quite straightforwardly and give good advice (although he won't act FOR you - he's no more your Queen than you are his Pawn), if he dislikes you he'll conjure up a labyrinth of riddles to bewilder and vex, but if he HATES you well, only then will he trouble himself to act and then he'll probably squash you like a bug.

                          Fortunately he's a pretty laid-back sort of Demigod and it takes much more than Wickedness to vex him (if he hasn't squashed The Tralax after almost an eon of being obliged to put up with their provocations - it's not that they actually WANT to rouse up his ire against them, more that they just can't help but be themselves - you will most likely not even register on his radar); he is in truth rather aloof, ambivalent and perhaps even a touch cold-hearted.

                          Looking at him is rather like looking into a Hall of Mirrors (and not just because his attendants keep that mighty exoskeleton SHINY) and trying to work out which casts the truest reflection - you're never quite certain which is the right interpretation to place on his actions, mostly because he prefers to let people work things out for themselves or just enjoy watching them TRY to puzzle things out.

                          Several eons of existence and he STILL can't quite shake the simple entertainment of all those muscle groups twitching as they try to process complicated emotions into nice, simple semaphore signals.


                          • #14
                            D'Henna - Points of Interest

                            The Enemy of Turlon, The Proudest Queendom, The Realm of Past Glories, The Broken Empire, The Gift of Mamma Henna, The Inheritance of Alacarn, The Once and Future Empire, Dust-Dry D'Henna, D'Henna the Diminished, D'Henna the Defiant, D'Henna the Undaunted.

                            THE LAND

                            As a note D'Henna is traditionally divided into Four Quarters, sitting side by side as the eye passes left to right from the Midland Mountains to the Black Coast across any map of The Proudest Queendom; viewed in that order they are (respectively) The Hard Quarter, The Empty Quarter, Henna's Quarter and The Old Quarter.

                            THE HARD QUARTER, still sometimes known as THE SKYLAND is by far the most secure part of the Queendom, employing the mightiest mountains on the Continent as a buttress against all harm and in particular as a rampart against any threat from out of the West - a system of defences only ever penetrated by Great Bunghi and never entirely overwhelmed.

                            The fact that Dornya remains the capital of D'Henna bears witness to this truth, though it rests far away from the most populated areas of the Once and Future Empire - partly because it sits at the heart of the richest mining district known to this nation, mostly because generations of Hennan Kings and Queens have lived in dread of being pincered by simultaneous attacks from Turlon, Sephia and Vokelstein … a very unlikely, but not entirely impossible contingency.

                            This dominance of the West within the Halls of Power is a relatively new phenomenon - dating no further back than the War of the Eight-Fingered Hand and the Thunderstorm on Hooves that struck D'Henna as part of that conflict, after which Kings and Queens (who had long employed Horse-Taming Thur as their personal hatchet-men) began to fall victim to fears that their Realm would never be safe and therefore went to great lengths to ensure that at least their dynasty would endure in some comfort (they might have their backs against the wall, but it would at least be comfortably-tapestried).

                            This mindset has been mitigated by distance in time and more modern success stories, but D'Henna remains as strategically wary as it is proud. More to the point it has proven impossible to maintain Good Order in the realm from its fringes and so more recent generations of Monarchs have resumed the practice of spending high summer (fever-time in the heart of the Queendom) in the mountains and winter in the flatland.

                            Not all of their viceroys are thrilled by this increase in supervision.

                            Prominent Locations (Outside Dornya):-

                            Longsummer Vale (Dornya, once the old Summer Palace, rests at its heart)
                            The Pits (formerly Goldenhill).
                            The Ebon Fort
                            Bright View
                            Breakleg Pass
                            The Western Gate

                            THE EMPTY QUARTER also called THE DRYLAND is still more Arid than the Hard Quarter and thrice as harsh; caught between the rain shadow of the Midland Mountains and the life-giving waters of Henna's Dynasty (the greatest local rivers and their vassal streams) only a series of wells and a mighty aquifer keep anything like civilisation going here, but these are almost entirely in the control of Calipan - fortunately Calipan is a crossroads rather than a roadblock and is generally a neighbour with a certain family feeling, even if it remains as estranged from D'Henna as any other former dominion of The Proudest Queendom (not least because unlike Vokelstein, Calipani despise The Tralax and their influence even more than they dislike being reminded of D'Henna).

                            Something to remember; you can always tell a Hennan native of this area from a Calipani by their reaction to being called a Drylander - a Hennan will take it in their stride, a Calipani will either cry out that they are Wellborn or that you are a fool for thinking them a Hennan or quite probably both (with a curse for thinking their home a DESERT).

                            As a note few Hennans are born here - most of them the offspring of the garrisons kept around the Lonely Lake to ensure that a Hennan host can still march East or West at need without hazarding anything worse than hungry nomads or being obliged to Calipan for leeway (although as recently proven by Lord-Prince Cassius during the Rising of the Unchained Gangs, one is still wise to take council with the Sun-Worshippers).

                            Prominent Locations (Outside Calipan):-

                            -:The Lonely Lake (the largest reliable body of water in the Dry Quarter and therefore strategically vital, surrounded by garrisons - such as Lakestone, Holdwater, Continuation - and blessed with a few stops on the Caravan trails to bring business through, such as Drinklake or Passwell).

                            HENNA'S QUARTER more commonly called The DOWERLAND consists of the territories defined by the three greatest rivers in the Realm of Past Glories (from Left to Right Nana Henna and Mamma Henna - subdivided into Old Henna, Queen Henna and Empress Henna). It is here that we find the most agriculturally rich and fecund part of the Realm, as well as the Lion's Share of Trade - the problem is that these Great Rivers are as much a free-flowing high road as an agricultural heartland and not all of D'Hennas most profitable trading partners are the best of neighbours (witness enterprising Sephia and wicked Turlon).

                            Put simply The Dowerland is a market that can either boom, bust or descend into bloody mayhem - other neighbours are less unpredictable than Turlon, but not necessarily very much more friendly. Quite frankly the rivers of D'Henna can (in a particularly bad year) be almost as rich in pirates and privateers as the seas surrounding the Pirate Isles.

                            In better years the River Valleys may be peaceful and prosperous, but they are still thick with slaves (too many Bronzeborn at all levels, unwilling to spend time farming when they can be pursuing the Noble Arts or raising Trouble) and were accordingly at the very heart of the Rising led by Melyssa the Bandit Queen of the Unchained Gangs - who remains at large to keep the Riverborn free from any threat of Peace for the foreseeable future.

                            Prominent Locations along the Rivers:-


                            THE SALLY PORTS deserve a special mention; scattered over the course of the Rivers which make up Hennas Dynasty it is here that the famed River Regiments are headquartered (formations as able to fight on land as they are to make war by river-boat) and the most formidable fortifications in the region may be found.

                            Unsurprisingly these cities tend to be the hubs around which the Dowerland turns (Empire in particular is grown to be almost more a trade town than a fortress, having been designed as an Imperial Capital and proven a surpassing profitable market even after the Throneborn took to living elsewhere).


                            THE OLD QUARTER is where civilisation in D'Henna is held to have begun, although not where it reached its apex (hence its more common name THE HINTERLAND); quite frankly while somewhat less dust-dry than many other parts of The Proudest Kingdom agricultural resources here are harder to come by than in many other places - in truth most of them are concentrated in Vokelstein, which dominates this Quarter even more than the Eternal War albeit in somewhat more subtle fashion.

                            Outside of the pastureland by the Stonelake, where the finest horses and the best beeves in D'Henna are pastured (it might be made into good fields, were raid and counter-raid such a hard fact of life), rocks are more easily harvested than grains in this portion of the realm - the folk here have always been a hardscrabble, self-sufficient lot with little time for graces or leisure or anything but a certain hard-nosed swashbuckling (though they always seem to make time for the festivals of competition ubiquitous in D'Henna - or just take it).

                            On the other hand, as the Hinterlanders like to boast living elsewhere in D'Henna will get you killed - living in 'Crowfeed Kingdom' will make you TOUGH, as even a casual knowledge of the most famous local daughter and her career will convince the informed reader.

                            They don't rename continents after just ANYONE, you know.

                            Prominent Locations:-

                            Old Gloria
                            The Temple of Perpetuity
                            Hunters Hall
                            Impasse Cleft

                            As a note this is only the smallest possible sample of this Ancient and Extensive Kingdom - if my researches uncover more names and more data, this shall most assuredly be posted.
                            Last edited by Libra1010; 12-24-2014, 08:06 AM.


                            • #15
                              Re: The savage world of winterwier!

                              The endless conflict between D'Henna and Turlon was always a favorite evocative bit of business from me. For your information, Libra, much of Winterweir's lore, geography, and fun is being rewritten and re-incorporated into "Death Knight" which is my dark fantasy novel currently in the works. What happens when the Dark Lord falls and his shadowy minions regain their strength? We'll find out! If you want to know more, please just PM me, Libra!
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